You know the feeling: stuck in traffic, creeping along, ticking off the minutes and getting just ticked. And maybe you've felt that choke in the air, when vehicle pollutants heat up in the summer, and air quality veers off into a ditch.
RideFinders is driving a change to these scenes. Using federal Congestion Mitigation Air Quality (CMAQ) funds applied toward achieving Clean Air Act goals, this local agency is charged with getting some vehicles off the road, by grouping commuters into Carpools and Vanpools. SJ Morrison, RideFinders' Director of Marketing and Planning, tells Earthworms how these services can save you money, cut your stress and clean up the air our region breathes.
Cost to you, the commuter? Free. Including the service "Guaranteed Ride Home" that covers a cab ride (up to 4x a year) if an emergency arises on your Carpool day. RideFinders maintains a database of over 12,000 St. Louis area commuters, to help anyone in a 12-county region match up with a convenient ride. Even a couple of days a week, carpooling contributes to cleaner air.
RideFinders tracks all results of these investments - and works with employers to get the word out as efficiently and broadly as possible. Could RideFinders work for you?
RideFinders is operated by Madison County Transit, serving the St. Louis region since 1994.
Music: Lime House Blues, recorded at KDHX studios by Del McCoury - and picked just for you SJ, with thanks for being a KDHX fan!
The St. Louis region is crisscrossed, surrounded and blessed with rivers and streams. Thanks to this week's guest group, Great Rivers Greenway, these natural features are increasingly connected by a network of trails and greenways, a vibrant invitation to folks of all ages to explore our area, and enjoy more of our lives outside!
Elizabeth Simons, GRG's Community Programs Manager, and Conservation Programs Manager Angie Weber talk about their organization's history, purpose, projects and plans, including the call this month for the public to advise the next five years of GRG's work. Efforts of the past 15 years to purchase and lease land, build trails and connect natural features are now being enhanced by ecological restoration, native planting, and water-conserving greenway elements. This is 21st century, habitat-hip get-around-Green great stuff!
Open House events on February 17 at the Bridgeton Trails Branch Library and on February 23 at the Missouri History Museum will showcase GRG achievements and solicit community input.
A significant fact about GRG is that residents of St. Louis City and County and St. Charles County have twice voted to support these resources with our tax dollars (2000, 2013). Tax support on the Illinois side of the KDHX listening area sustains more inter-connective open spaces. GRG circulates an eNewsletter, including volunteer opportunities, fun events and progress reports.
Multiple reasons to learn more - and add your perspective to the public comment mix, by electronic survey if you can't make it to an Open House. Check out these active-living, nature-loving resources!
Music: Extremist Stomp, recorded live at KDHX by Pokey LaFarge and Ryan Spearman.
Today's Earthworms guest is one of the planet's most respected honeybee behaviorists, certainly a researcher and author whose bee-buzz is FUN (and useful!) to read. Dr. Thomas Dyer Seeley is Cornell University's Horace White Professor in Biology, in this biology powerhouse institution's Department of Neurology and Behavior. In more common terms, Tom Seeley is a scientist who loves honeybees and has learned deeply from bee colonies, domestic and wild.
What is honeybee society? Is it "Democracy," really? What enables a Queen Bee to support the entire colony that she alone mothers? And what-all goes on with bees that, in turn, keep the colony going around the year, when nectar is flowing and when plants, water and earth are frozen . . .
What's different about wild and domestic bee colonies? And what can today's avid amateur beekeepers (hundreds in St. Louis alone!) learn from wild honeybee populations, and potentially adapt to help domestic bee survival?
BeeSpeakSTL, our regional beekeeping speaker series, will host Tom Seeley here on Saturday February 27, 11 am - 3 pm at the Missouri Botanical Garden. May this Earthworms conversation pique your interest in hearing this Super Bee Guy's talks. Maybe you'll even step out and try the Apis melifera - Homo sapiens dance.
Our species share "Democracy" - yes, at least more or less - and Dancing, and for sure a taste for Sweetness.
Thanks to Isabee's and BeeSpeakSTL.com for coordinating this interview.
Thanks to Haley and Andy for engineering.
Music: Brandenburg Concerto No. 4 by J.S. Bach (a notable "B") performed by Kevin MacLeod.